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Good news, bad news kind or week. Ronald the cat was hit by a car. His physical pain is my emotional pain. We are both suffering. The $400 vet bill was covered today by a couple who wanted to rent out the store garage for $200 a month! Yes! This, after I pay off said vet bill, will be my mad money or breathing room money. Trips, an occasional dinner out. I feel so rich. Plus, I got an extra $105 back from my health insurance. I bought a $125 kitty run for Ronald for recuperation. He hates it. Darn!
I shopped at Wal-Mart today. Was lured by their ad for fresh blueberries. I can make a mean blueberry pie and I aim to eat one up this weekend. While there, I passed the greeting card section. I missed Janet's Birthday and my cousin's and niece's and my sister's is coming up. Yes, I did get my sister a card. In my head, I haven't sent it, but now I'm prepared in case that inkling comes over me. I mean, really, would it kill me? Is it sincere? Holding the door open a crack. For how many years? Why?
I'm listening, all day, to an audible book. It gives me the sensation that I'm reading a novel and being active and occupied with useful work simultaneously. But sometimes I wonder if I have lost touch with my own mind, my thoughts, passions, dialogues that might be helpful. I often go to sleep at night listening to TED talks or a podcast. It's like I need a diversion for my mind. Am I avoiding? Or is my life now so absent of worry and pressure that I am bored? I could abstain from these tools and find out. Or not.
It's a really dark morning. There's thunder rolling in the distance. My cat is curled into his bed on top of my desk. I'm ready to return to the store to work for the day. My two days off are enough of a break from the task of developing this business to give my mind a rest. I gardened, weeded, knitted, baked a blueberry pie and shared it, swam, banked, shopped online, washed windows, walked for ice cream, did laundry, napped, reorganized my kitchen to accommodate cat's need to crawl into dark recesses of corner kitchen cabinet. Ahh, it's raining.
For a few months now, I've been examining options for how to act purposefully, decently, with antenna up for both your feelings and mine. Your birthday card remains here in front of me. It seems shoddy to shove a note with a cover into your mailbox reminding you that I'm still here, still charged with the need to placate you. Why else would a message show up on this one particular day? It's a continuation of the "you're important/ family's important" game. I'm bowing out. There's been no indication from you or yours that anyone is interested in continuing it.
We had hours of rain today. On the news tonight, there are so many stories about flooding of the freeways, stalled cars, rescues, people in boats. I had some minor basement flooding at home, which has been sopped up. There is talk about calling off work for tomorrow, encouraging people to stay off the roads. I wonder how my really old building is faring. They're call it a 150 year flood. We've escaped many storms; no hurricanes, few tornadoes, no drought or earthquakes. This is usually a very safe place to reside. So every place has it's troubles. Now ours.
I'm going to California next month. I'm afraid. There's the terrorist's plots and eboli. There's the nightmare of the remnants of bodies blown to bits by Hamas (or was it a different group?) There's the discomfort I feel about leaving my poor cat. Many reasons not to go. But I want to see my son. I love spending time with him. Probably more than anyone else. If I feel the bond, how come he doesn't? Does that mean it's all in my head? and our relationship is not important to him? It's hard to believe, always, that he is indifferent.
Today's my niece's birthday. I wish I could tell her I'm thinking of her and wish her well. I miss her. Yet, that's just me. She hasn't communicated with me for over a year. I know she's changed her phone number and email due to some stalker incident. If I was in her thoughts, she could call me. So farewell, niece. Hope you're off to a good life. Hope your children thrive. It's been (mostly) great to have witnessed your progression since your birth 36 years ago. Relationships mean nothing. This is the hardest lesson to accept. Family means nothing.
Art therapy was hard today. I built on last weeks session in which I drew an image of a cold, aloof mother and I as the marred spindly colt which was hiding under a crib, in the shadows. Today I drew my son, exiting a house through a doorway which was shadowed. All around the house and in front of him, there was morning, bright sunlight, yet he remained in the shadow of a balcony which had crib like railings. In comparing the two drawings, one could see they were related by use of chalk and the swirls of sky.
Beautiful day! Friend and I visited the Detroit Institute of Arts for a lesson in Shibori and a piano concert. Both were enjoyable. We had a good discussion about our reactions to the movie "Boyhood." The movie validated my current stance on marriage. That the belief that one's life will be complete only with a soul mate is quite harmful. That not enough examination is given to another obvious alternative...that of vowing to stay single and learning to enjoy it. Be complete by yourself so that you don't spend your time searching, or dissatisfied. Just appreciate life as is.
Today, I prepared for my birthday tomorrow. I cleaned house, organized dining room cupboard so that I always have an empty drawer to stash the papers that build up on the table and always have paper pad and pen in a predictable place. Plus, I paid my bills, completed correspondence, called to update Obamacare. I picked flowers, changed cat littler box. Really, I was so done and ready to relax with my knitting, all cozy against the rain pounding on the roof. My neighbor called to report their basement flooded. I checked mine and, sure enough, water pouring onto floor.
Just read my horoscope for my birthday. Surprise! Everything's going to be great. I have had 62 years on this planet. I am very fortunate. I think about my warm comfort as I lay in my bed at night. I think of all the food I have at my disposal as I open the cupboards to prepare a meal. I think of my enjoyment of watching my cat play in the grass under my lawn chair. What bliss and freedom from concern. I wish everyone everywhere could enjoy the same peace of mind that I savor. It is a blessing.
A freaky bad luck day! It started early, with an empty coffee container. Morning without coffee? I tried to get ready for the store early and stop on the way for Bigsby coffee. I'd pick up a breakfast sandwich, too. I knocked over a glass container of enu oil and the glass scattered over my bathroom floor. Turns out Bigsby doesn't have breakfast sandwiches, so I walked three doors down for a Burgerchef egg sandwich. They were out of eggs! Next, I broke an Ikea sawhorse, I cut my wrist on the only nail in a piece of wood. Yikes!
I don't like the fact that you sent me a birthday card. For one, it's one-up-manship. Two; what is the point in sending a ready made card and adding Love, Name? I can buy my own card. If you still can't bear to communicate with me either by letter or by phone or up front and personal, then own it. Stop trying to cover your bases. The card I received from you says, "Let's pretend we want to talk even though we don't. Let's give me credit for sticking a stamp on an envelope, which you didn't. Kudos!"
More on the rogue birthday card... I snickered when I imagined myself writing deceased across the envelope and sending it back. Or maybe, "relationship deceased." What would I do if I had received such a message from a card I (didn't) send. Nothing. I wouldn't even look for an obit in their paper. I already mourned. She's already dead to me. But it's weird she's still alive and silent and cold and reticent. It still hurts, obviously. But she quit talking to me. Why send me a card? Probably in regard for our past. I hate the past. Chuck it.
Dear Sis, Let's not pretend with stupid cards. Save your pennies, save your efforts. Cards with three words are a display of obligatory rightness. You're being the goodie two shoes you always have been. But Dad's not here to give you any credit. You don't want to communicate, or you would write a letter. You'd explain why you stopped talking to me. You'd acknowledge your lack of courage, your fear of facing hurtful feelings. You might even acknowledge that lifelong pill dependency has left you unable to cope with the world, except to wear your pretty clothes like an ornament.
I'm re energized with a little passion for an art project. I even dreamed about my next works last night. I'm into large paper on which I paste paint finger marks and poured swirls and stamped circles...anything. The colors shift from one hue to another. It's all decorative, fun stuff. Then I transform it into a 4 sided rigid, well constructed paper bag with handles. The way the paper gets segmented into arbitrary planes makes the work interesting. Since I've learned that randomness adds to the appeal, I'm going to start fingerpainting animals, faces, fish. Anything goes. Great freedom.
He mentioned today that he laments he doesn't have a mentor; someone that can guide him in his career and explain finances to him. I thought, yeah, me, too. Someone who could help me prioritize business expenditures in terms of money and effort. But all the answers are out there. They might not come in the benevolent relationships we dream of. Formulating the questions you seek is a really powerful step. Only then can you seek some answers. Otherwise it's a morass of insecurity and indecision. Also, isn't this a universal desire and the reason for our invention of God?
My parents, like most, guided, coerced me into their religious beliefs. So since I was very small, I have believed in a God. First it was an old man in the sky, then maturity and compromise lead me to believe in a divine intelligence. There is a comfort in relying on someone to hear me when I need strength and comfort. There's even a comfort or a reassurance when something remarkable happens or coincidental. Ah! What I was praying for was answered by God. It renews hope. It allows for magical thinking. Letting go of that crutch might be significant.
Letting go of God. It's like letting go of my marriage, letting go of my family. These, after studying the futility of maintaining the belief that these were helpful relationships. "Abandoning hope," as Chodron says. Stop waiting for things to get better. Stop waiting to live until things fall in line. It's pretty hard for me to erase God. And what is the harm of believing? It's starting to feel like magical, stupid thinking. Can you be spiritual without believing in God? or in the divine? Belief that "it's all good" has some holes in it, too. Agnostic might fit.
I have a new self image, brought about by my independent living. Forever, I thought of myself as messy. The mess was controlled in all regions of the house, but it all fell apart in the bedroom. Clothes strewn on the desk chair, on top of the chest, on the bed, hung on doorknobs. Laundry day entailed sorting again to get them into draws. Today, eureka! The crux of the problem is that I hate drawers. They're difficult. So now I have a long bench topped with three piles: tops, pants, shorts. My shoes are lined up underneath it. Bravo.
The more I experience it, the more it becomes apparent to me that we're not meant to live as couples, sharing space. Solitude provides self knowledge; a chance to be master of your fate. It clears the head because your thoughts aren't constantly being thwarted by interruptions. One's mind functions better not having to grapple with someone else's moods, preferences, anger, schedules. etc. Not to mention the unnerving that results in fighting over these things. Calm, peacefulness is such a blessing. I think I've gained a few years in life expectancy. Life's just too complicated without negotiating every little thing.
I submitted art work into a small, unsubstantial venue: the public library of a neighboring town. But it's my first entry for maybe 20 years? It's like I'm revisiting an old hallway, decked with paintings, following the path toward some brightened opening. My little entrees were three animals crafted, imaginatively, with boxes covered with decoupaged bright papers. It just so happened that when I read about the Menagerie Show, I had already made two of the animals to demonstrate decoupage in my store. So I couldn't resist entering them. Now, it's easier than ever. Smart phone photo and application-emailed.
I've been spending the last 90 minutes catching up with the August 100 words. Is this a waste of time? The writings are shallow, hollow, banal. Not fun the write, or read. I think next time I fall behind, I'm going to give it up for the month. I don't like wasting leisure time. I could have completed a sleeve on my sweater knitting. Sometimes I love 100 words for the opportunity it gives me to reflect and define my feelings and thoughts about occurrences. But tonight's writing was unrewarding and time consuming. Name it to claim it. Next time.
I made a pasta salad for a crowd. My challenge was to find a nice bowl in which to serve it. I knew I had such a bowl; I could picture it, but I couldn't find it. I considered other large bowls, but each was suspiciously raku looking and I didn't know the safety for food. The bowl was given to me by my sister. I searched in every cabinet in every room. I began to imagine it was broken and quietly and secretly thrown out. I gave up, began to dust. Oh! there it was on lower coffee table.
I was tagged via Facebook to share 10 books that influenced my life. Interesting assignment. My list emphasized books that I have read in the last 8 years. Maybe I just can't remember earlier books. That seems reasonable. A bit sad, though. I posed the question, Do you re-read books? because I never do. One person responded that he usually re-reads book, because the first time through is mostly focused on the plot. He said the second time through he can more appreciate the word choice, and the art with which the author constructs the story. Good point.
Everytime I look in the mirror, I wonder how I have the courage to go around looking like this. Then I wipe it from my awareness and keep going. My whole life, until a year ago, I really cared about what I wore, my hair style, complexion. I even had eyelid surgery about 8 years ago. Now it seems passe. I can totally forget that my hair dresser made me look like a monk. What the hell was she thinking? But, it's the inner person that counts. Maybe I have inner beauty that can be enhanced by meager exterior beauty.
My little cat has made remarkable progress since his car accident. It's been 5 weeks. He doesn't seem to feel any discomfort. He is a bit more attached to me. He'll spend extra relaxation time in the evening, just curling up on the couch next to me. He likes to keep one of his paws touching me. So sweet. I wonder if my being solo now increases my attachment to a little cat; like being blind emphasizes the sense of hearing. Ha. Anyway, Ronald is approximately one year old. A big, skinny, black cat. 100 words is a struggle today.
Getting a sign for my store. How hard could it be? You think of a design, call a company, get a quote. Compare it to another and pick one. NO! Five frigging companies have listened, not responded, give me partial information (like not including the cost of hanging the sign) and then never get back to me. Screw 'em. I'm going to do it myself! I've got a killer design, which truth be told, emerged, evolved while waiting for answers and because of cost limitations. I'll be embarrassed to be painting on my building with traffic watching my progress. Onward!
I sat next to a woman, nearing 60, at an event today. She told me she is newly married, a year and a half, and that this is her fourth marriage. Her last one was abusive. Prior to this knowledge, she had interjected a fact into her husband's story, to which he said angrily, "Will you just let me tell the story?" Yep, I thought to myself, she did it again. Relationships are such a waste of time. I think the world would be happier if people learned that they don't disappear or lose value by being alone, staying single.
Today was spent, happily preparing for a party. I initiated the party for my 2 front neighbors two back neighbors and my side neighbors. Actually, I enlisted the help of friend and side neighbor Kay. This was very helpful to know I was not the sole provider. Difference: there was no spouse to worry about. No more of his anxiety attacks that elevated my own sense of risk. Would he be nice to the guests? Would something I say offend him? Would he disappear and quietly sulk in his room? No. Just my desire and determination: from cocoon to butterfly.
The Tip Jar